Study: Amniotic fluid as a dry eye treatment
This fascinating study looks at using amniotic fluid in two different ways: Soaking soft contact lenses in it than applying them to the eye for a week, and mixing amniotic fluid with artificial tears (1:24) for use four times a day.
What I like about this study? The patients didn’t do anything else. In dry eye, there’s so often an awful lot of ‘noise’ from multiple therapies.
What not quite as much? It’s only a week, and OSDI was “adapted” (why?)
But this is an important area that is not well known and I look forward to more studies about it.
A Pilot Study of the Short Term Effectiveness and Safety of Amniotic Fluid in Severe Dry Eye Disease. Chen et al, Med Hypothesis Discov Innov Ophthalmol. 2019 Summer;8(2):81-84.
The aim of this study was to evaluate if amniotic fluid (AF) mixed with artificial tears or soaked with a soft contact lens (SCL) as a treatment for severe dry eye disease (DED) would improve its signs or symptoms. In this retrospective pilot study 22 consecutive eyes of 11 patients with level 3 DED classified by DEWS 1 (Dry Eye WorkShop 1 2007), were included in the study between June 1 and September 30 in 2017. The study was conducted before DEWS II (Dry Eye WorkShop II 2017), which was published in October 2017. Therefore, DEWS II was not adopted for this study. Soft Contact Lens Acuvue Oasys of Plano with 8.8 base curve and 14 mm diameters by Johnson and Johnson were used to soak in FloGraft, which is an AF, for 30 minutes before placing in 12 eyes in Group 1. The contact lenses were placed in the left eye for 1 week. In Group 2, 10 eyes used 6 mL of artificial tears mixed with 0.25 mL of AF, which were applied to the eye four times a day for 1 week. No other eye medications were used. The eyes that were included had diffuse punctate staining and fast tear breaking times of <5 seconds with severe ocular symptoms (DEWS 1 level 3-4). Photos of fluorescein stain corneas before the treatment and 1 week after the treatment were used to compare the distribution of punctate staining as the objective outcomes for signs. Several questions adopted from the Ocular Surface disease Index (OSDI) about subjective symptoms before and after the treatment were asked, and documented on the chart. Improvement either in symptoms or signs or both of DED after 1 week at follow-up examination was recorded. Group 1, with SCL 46% had improvement after 1 week and Group 2, with artificial tears 50% had improvement after 1 week. Improvement means either symptom relief or comparatively decreased distribution of punctate staining on the cornea or both. No cases had inflammation, infection, irritation or blurred vision. We concluded that FloGraft as an AF can safely improve the symptoms or the signs of severe DED either as a mix with artificial tears or soaked with SCL by about 50% in this case series without evidence of irritation, inflammation or blurred vision in the short term.